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The New Zealand Government is spending $92 million over three years on business R&D through the new Technology Development Grant programme.

Announcing grants to 26 companies nation-wide in Christchurch this week, Research, Science and Technology Minister Wayne Mapp said that lifting high-tech export business is critical to New Zealand’s future.

“Increasing exports is an essential part of the Government’s economic strategy. These grants demonstrate the Government’s commitment to invest in businesses that have the ambition to grow through R&D,” he said.

The companies receiving the grant were from a range of sectors including manufacturing, biotechnology, 3D scanning and modelling, furniture design, digital technologies and software.

“This is about backing winners. These businesses are trailblazers in their commitment to innovation. The TIN100 list contains 19 of the 26 companies who are receiving grants today.

“New Zealand’s leading high-tech companies need to retain their competitive edge in global markets for the benefit of us all. Helping to take some of the risk out of R&D will encourage these firms to stretch for more ambitious goals.

“This is the largest business investment the Government has ever made in helping business innovate. The businesses will have more financial certainty over the next three years. They will be able to accelerate the development of innovative products and services and take them to their clients all over the world,” Mapp said.

The investments start at $490,000 and range up to the maximum level of $7.2 million over three years.

The Technology Development Grant is one of the flagship business assistance funds announced in Budget 2010 to boost business R&D. It is for 20% of a business’s annual R&D spend. Investments are capped at $2.4 million per year for three years.

“We are already planning for the 2011 round when, again, we will be investing in businesses who will take their R&D to the next level,” the Minister said.

The following businesses have been awarded a Technology Development Grant from the 2010/11 investment round. The amounts listed are GST exclusive and represent the approved maximum investments over three years. The final amount businesses will receive depends on their actual R&D expenditure over the next three years.

The companies are:

  • Applied Research Associates NZ Ltd: developer of 3D scanning and modelling technology for applications as diverse as moviemaking, geological modelling and medicine. (Christchurch) $1.32 million.
  • BankLink: provider of services to accounting professionals focusing on streamlining the compliance accounting processes of small and medium enterprise owners and their accountants. (Auckland) $2.10 million.
  • Compac Sorting Equipment Ltd: developer and manufacturer of fruit & vegetable packing technology, machinery, software and electronic solutions around the world. (Auckland) $1.72 million.
  • Dynamic Controls Ltd: manufacturer of electronic controls for power wheelchairs and scooters. (Christchurch) $5.28 million.
  • Douglas Pharmaceuticals Ltd: one of the fastest growing pharmaceutical companies in Australasia, with considerable investment in product development laboratories. (Auckland) $7.20 million.
  • Enatel Ltd: specialists in the design and manufacture of a range of standby power solutions for the telecom, networking, wireless and industrial markets. (Christchurch) $2.46 million.
  • Endace Technology Ltd: supplier of high-speed network traffic capture and analysis solutions to large enterprises, telcos, financial firms and government agencies worldwide. (Auckland) $6.70 million.
  • Fisher & Paykel Healthcare Corporation Ltd: designer, manufacturer and marketer of a range of innovative healthcare devices which incorporate unique features to improve patient care. (Auckland) $7.20 million.
  • Formway Furniture Ltd: designer of high performance office seating and furniture. (Wellington) $1.22 million.
  • Gallagher Group Ltd: provider of power fence and animal performance systems. (Hamilton) $7.20 million.
  • Gentrack Ltd: developing, implementing and supporting software solutions for energy, water and airport utilities. (Auckland) $1.44 million.
  • Integrated Control Technology: manufacturers of leading edge integrated electronic access control, intrusion protection and building automation solutions. (Auckland) $0.85 million.
  • Jade Software Corporation: designs and develops next generation applications and builds high-performance data management technology. (Christchurch) $3.20 million.
  • Orchestral Development Ltd/Orion: provider of clinical workflow and integration technology for the healthcare sector. (Auckland) $7.20 million.
  • Rakon Ltd: design and manufacture of frequency control solutions particularly crystal oscillators for GPS equipment. (Auckland) $7.08 million.
  • Scott Technology Ltd: engineering company that specialises in the design and manufacture of automated production and process machinery in meat and food industry. (Dunedin) $3.78 million.
  • Serato Inc Ltd: producer of software products for DJs for time-stretching and pitch-shifting of digital audio files. (Auckland) $0.49 million.
  • Simcro Tech Ltd: designer and manufacturer of agricultural and animal health delivery systems. (Hamilton) $0.93 million.
  • Sika Technology Ltd: developer and producer of aluminium die cast solutions for the telecommunication and municipal utility sectors. (Auckland) $0.95 million.
  • Skope Industries Ltd: designer, manufacturer and supplier of commercial refrigeration, food service and heating products globally. (Christchurch) $3.21 million.
  • Tait Electronics Ltd: designing and delivering radio solutions which are the right fit for a variety of industries including public safety agencies, government services, utilities and urban transport providers. (Christchurch) $7.20 million.
  • Vista Entertainment Solutions Ltd: ticketing and billing software solutions for the cinema industry worldwide. (Auckland) $1.24 million.
  • Weta Digital Ltd: digital artists in all areas of visual effects production, including animation, motion capture, crowd generation, modelling, compositing, and film scanning and recording. (Wellington) $7.20 million.
  • Zeacom Ltd: provider of advanced Unified Communications (UC) and contact centre solutions that integrate real-time communication tools such as presence information, contact routing, conferencing, chat and speech recognition with conventional tools such as voicemail, email and fax. (Auckland) $2.11 million.
  • Zelam Ltd: chemical company providing products for niche domestic and international agrichemical and timber markets. (New Plymouth) $0.87 million
  • 4RF Communications Ltd: developer and manufacturer of wireless radio equipment for critical infrastructure applications. (Wellington) $1.89 million.

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